Am I the only one who didn't find it ironic that Apple used non-apple hardware for handheld POS terminals?
If given a choice today, and I were in charge of the Apple stores, I probably would still not choose an apple solution for POS. The computing industry is absolutely massive and proficiency in one market doesn't necessarily transfer to another.
There are plenty of things about these handheld scanners that are drastically different than an iPhone or touch. For instance, the ones we use at my company are indestructible. You can drop them from 6 feet onto concrete repeatedly, hundreds times in a row, and they won't break. You can take the battery out, replace it with a fresh one, and the device comes back to life on the last screen you left it, and without wifi disruption to the currently open apps. That's right, the system loses no data even without a battery. Oh, and they never crash, ever. They run for years without a single glance by our IT staff. (With the hardware and software combo we run at least)
There are numerous other systems in the apple stores which also don't run on macs. Everything from the security system, the climate control, to probably even the payroll records hosted on an external website. I suppose the POS software/hardware is high profile in the public's eyes, but other than that it really isn't too significant.
Most people are too clueless to give it second though. And the people who are really knowledgeable about these things aren't surprised either. It is only the people in between that find it ironic, the computer savy users who know quite a bit about macs but not about computer use in retail.
I suppose it might be worthwhile if apple wanted to move out of the consumer market and into retail/commercial/industrial. But to do so requires completely redesigning their hardware. The iPhone and touch are horribly suited to most uses in these fields.
And yes, this is coming from a 20 year mac user who absolutely loves his iPhone.